Variable or compressed work week

Information: Life events disclaimer

The following material is intended to provide you with information about some of the common types of change in employment situations and the effects it will have on your employment.

What is a variable work week?

A variable work week is the compression or extension of the weekly hours of work in a period other than five standard working days averaged over a specified period of time. It is commonly referred to as compressed work week.

Are all employees able to request to work a variable work week?

Not all Collective Agreements and terms and conditions of employment contain provisions for a variable work week. For example, the terms and conditions of employment for the executive group specifically prohibit a compressed work week and the directive on the terms and conditions of employment for certain excluded/unrepresented employees does not have a variable work week provision. It is therefore recommended that you consult the relevant authorities such as your collective agreement and/or the various terms and conditions of employment specific to your classification group in order to determine if you are able to request to work a variable work week.

I would like to apply to work a variable work week. How should I proceed?

Your request to complete your weekly hours of work in a period other than five standard working days requires the approval of your manager. Your manager will assess the organization to ensure operational requirements can be met and that the work arrangement will not incur an increase in operational costs, such as overtime.

Will my salary change when I am working a variable work week?

Your salary will remain the same during the approved period of the variable work week.

If I work additional hours, how will I be compensated for the overtime?

The calculation for overtime for work performed in excess of your variable work week hours on a regular working day or on a day of rest is normally paid at a different rate. In many Collective Agreements, it is paid at time and three-quarters. Refer to the relevant authorities such as your collective agreement and/or the various terms and conditions of employment specific to your classification group.

If I am asked to act in a different position during a period that I am working a variable work week, how will the qualifying period and acting period be calculated?

If you are working a variable work week, the qualifying period for acting pay will be converted to hours. For example, if your collective agreement stipulates that the qualifying period to be eligible for acting pay is 3 days and the hours of work in your collective agreement are 7.5 hours per day, you will be required to act for 22.5 hours before qualifying for acting pay.

Example: 7.5 hours x 3 days = 22.5 hours

The acting pay will be paid to you based on the number of hours you work per day. As an example if you work 8.33 hours per day for 5 days, the payment to you will be 8.33 hours per day x 5 days which would be equivalent to 41.65 hours.

Does a person who works a variable work week have to make up time or submit vacation leave for the difference in hours of the designated holiday and their compressed work day?

You will be required to make up the difference in time or submit a vacation leave request for the additional time difference between the designated holiday hours and your compressed work day hours.

How do I request a day of a leave while working a variable work week?

When you request a day of leave, you must report the variable hours and not the regular standard hours of work of the collective agreement or Terms and Conditions of employment. As an example, if your variable work day is 8.33 hours, you will request leave for 8.33 hours and not 7.5 hours.

How will the Pay Centre be notified that my regular hours have changed and I am working a variable work week?

Once your manager has approved your variable work week schedule, he or she will subsequently advise your departmental human resource section, who in turn will provide the necessary information to the Pay Centre.

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